Rubber-based products such as seals and gaskets are made from artificial rubbers such as neoprene.
How is Neoprene Rubber Made?
Neoprene rubber is an artificially synthesized version of rubber. It is made by polymerizing chloroprene and is also sometimes referred to as polychloroprene. During the later stages of its production, polychloroprene undergoes the process of vulcanization, which helps modify the structural properties such as strength and elasticity.
During vulcanization, sulfur cross-links are formed in between the individual layers of polychloroprene. The number of sulfur links can be varied by adjusting different process parameters. With this, the production of various neoprene grades is possible. As with any chemical reaction, it takes years of experience the art of controlling the variables accurately.
What are Properties of Neoprene Rubber?
Neoprene rubber is a useful material because it has a number for important properties including
- Good ability to bond with other materials
- High heat resistance
- Good Chemical Resistance
Bonding with other materials
Safety equipment like shoes, pants, and protective coats are some of the excellent uses of neoprene. Apart from its chemical, heat, and cold resistance, the most important property for this application is its ability to be bonded with other types of materials such as cotton, steel, etc. Neoprene can be manipulated by adding a bonding agent and joining it to cotton, stainless steel, brass, copper, and aluminum. If required, using an additional measure, adhesion to acrylic and glass is also possible.
Heat & Cold Resistant
At very high temperatures, natural rubber starts decomposing and degrades physically. Neoprene, on the other hand, does not degrade at temperatures as high as 300 °F. Furthermore, neoprene can also handle short bursts of huge temperatures, such as catching fire very well. Instead of melting and stretching like normal rubber, neoprene hardens. Alongside being heat resistant, it also does not become stiff as easily as natural rubber. Neoprene can hold up to -75 °F. This increases the range over which the neoprene rubber is usable and hence increases the favorability in industrial environments.
Neoprene is a polymeric chain, with extra sulfur bonding. This directly reduces the normal reactivity and prevents environmental degradation processes like oxidation. This gives neoprene an excellent life.
Furthermore, neoprene also resists few organic acids, mineral acids, and salts. This greatly increases their applications in the medical and packaging industries. Apart from acids and salts, it also has excellent resistance towards petroleum-based solvents such as oil, grease, etc. Most of the seals and gaskets used in the petroleum industry are made using neoprene rubber.
TYM has been a major industry supplier of neoprene and other rubber-based products. We are known for delivering superior quality at competitive prices and reliability. TYM has nearly 40 years of experience in supplying and manufacturing gaskets and seals made from silicone, FKM fluoroelastomer, neoprene, nitrile, and more. TYM also features a technical hub, where we share the technical knowledge gained from our years of experience in the industry.
We, at TYM, have been developing all kinds of rubber products and have been a major supplier to the industry for over 40 years now. We strive to supply the highest quality products at the same time as offering unbeatable customer service again and again, regardless of the size of the order. At TYM, we are constantly looking to the future. We are dedicated to being at the forefront of new developments in the industry, sourcing the very latest products as they become available, or producing them ourselves using the newest cutting-edge technology and machinery.